By: Amy Wise
It’s funny, when my husband and I are together, whether in a restaurant, standing in line somewhere, even at a hospital, people aren’t quite sure if we are a couple. A while back I was in the emergency room (that’s another crazy story for another day) and we were waiting for the doctor. When he finally came in and introduced himself, he shook my hand and then looked at Jamie, shook his hand and said, “You are?”…….long pause…….I finally finished his sentence and said, “Husband.” He said, “Oh, well, you just never know these days.” Yeah right! We all know that if Jamie had been white the doctor would have automatically assumed he was my husband, but since he was black he just didn’t go there. Funny don’t you think? I’m so used to it at this point it hardly even gets to me… well, maybe just a little. The same thing happens to us in restaurants when we are waiting for a table. Unless we are holding hands or wrapped around each other, which we try not to do in public, it’s always, “Oh, you’re together?” Really? Are “we” such a shock? This is southern California for goodness sake and last I checked it is 2011. Isn’t it?
One of the more comical “Oh, you’re together moments?” was when I was having surgery years ago. I woke up post-surgery and asked for my husband. I wanted him by my side, AND he also had my glasses so I couldn’t see a darn thing! No contact lenses allowed during surgery. I was blind as a bat! The nurse said she checked the family waiting room and he wasn’t there. I knew he was, because he would make sure he was there when I woke up. That is just the kind of guy he is. I asked her to check again. She did, and she then went on to describe who was in the room and once again she was determined that he was not there. Well, guess what Nurse Ratchet (I only say that because she got irritated with me), the black man you just described in the waiting room is my husband! She didn’t even ask him if he was with me. Imagine? I kindly told her the big black man was my husband and after turning a few shades of red, she went back to the waiting room one last time, but this time she brought my hubby back with her. I finally had him back by my side AND I could see again! Hopefully, the nurse’s vision became just a little clearer that day too.
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Originally published on The Seattle Lesbian
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